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New BIO Working Groups Give Growing Ag & Environment Biotech Sector a Public Policy Voice

September 27, 2023
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Updated regulatory working groups announced today by the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO) reflect the rapidly increasing diversity and impact of BIO’s Agriculture & Environment membership and ensure that all member companies’ regulatory and policy needs are met.

BIO’s Agriculture & Environment regulatory working groups now include an Agricultural Biologicals Working Group and a Biobased Manufacturing Working Group, as well as a Plant Working Group and an Animal Working Group.

The major change in the working group structure is the creation of the Agricultural Biologicals Working Group and the Biobased Manufacturing Working Group, which reflects the growth of both sectors. The agricultural biologicals sector includes, but is not limited to, food ingredients, enzymes for food processing, alternative proteins, and small molecules and microbes for crop inputs. The biobased manufacturing sector includes biobased energy, biochemicals, bioplastics, biobased materials and other products of industrial biotechnology.

The reorganized working groups have more-clearly established priorities and objectives, giving members greater opportunity to drive policy and work for a balanced regulatory structure that benefits agriculture, industry and consumers.

“By having a clear home for the different pipelines of members and prospective members, as well as the biotech scientific community, we are able to tackle the most pressing issues and show value to the industry,” said Beth Ellikidis, BIO’s vice president for Agriculture & Environment. “No other group has the diversity of membership and knowledge of biotech’s positive impacts for agriculture, climate and growing the bioeconomy.”

Dr. Leah Buchman, BIO’s senior manager for Agriculture & Environment Regulatory Policy, said policy makers and regulatory agencies will benefit, as well.

“Agencies and policy makers look to BIO as the leader in agricultural and industrial biotechnology,” said Buchman. “Our working groups now reflect the growing industry and demonstrate that BIO has the subject-matter expertise to help regulators make science-based, informed decisions.

“We at BIO need to be in sync with the speed at which biotech and science move, and this change will help us do that.”

Participation in BIO’s working groups is a benefit of BIO membership and is open to all employees of member companies. Members participate in meetings to surface issues that are important to their industry, engage in advocacy, and build relationships with industry colleagues.

Other BIO Agriculture & Environment Working Groups include Federal Government Relations, State Government Relations, Law, Communications, Agriculture International, and Climate working groups. Additional working group opportunities open to all BIO members focus on foreign investment in the U.S., finance and tax issues, and BIO Business Solutions member benefit programs.

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